I decided I was a fucking anarchist after reading the Dispossessed by Ursula Le Guinn when I was in my early twenties living in Hawaii. I had no idea what an anarchist actually was, what an anarchist scene was..fuck I didn’t really know anything other than that I liked to surf and that I didn’t like the world that I lived in. Anarchy represented the most radical difference to that...this made it incredibly attractive to me. It stayed incredibly attractive because I kept living in Hawaii, not knowing or meeting anarchists. I read, a lot. I’ve read a lot since I was a little kid. I didn’t make friends during childhood because I was too intense, too black and white morally and took the world way too seriously. I’ll be the first to admit that I haven’t cured myself of these childhood/childish ways. I thought at a young age that there was a moral obligation to watch the news, pay attention, know everything, and that somehow this would be helpful in fixing things. All I can do now is laugh at myself, which might seem like a refrain for my life at this point.
Eventually I moved to the Bay whereupon after a couple years I finally(with the help of Bellamy) joined an all volunteer anarchist solidarity network supposedly fighting evictions in Oakland. After one of the meetings at me and Bellamy’s house, 8 or so people of the group stayed to hang and talk. Bellamy and I found ourselves actually discussing whether or not there would be cell phones “after the revolution.” and how shifts in the mines and freight ships extracting and transferring rare earth minerals would work. We realized that almost everything we had read that influenced us was just ours. Nobody else was interested in our weirdo ideas and nobody else had even heard of most of the authors and ideas that moved us and challenged us the most. We were in shock. We had both had higher hopes, we had both been naive. When I first met Bellamy I loaned him a book and he read all of it and annotated the fuck out of it. This is how it goes in my dream world. This is how relationships start. This is how FRR started.
Eventually I found the people I was looking for. The people who wanted to discuss things, break them down, the people who took my hypotheticals seriously, or not seriously, but they played with me. In this play I grew. In this play I found friends and enemies and mess and experience and everything I wanted and didn’t want. I started FRR with Bellamy because I have always loved talking about ideas, life, metaphysics, and ethics, with my friends. Bellamy was one of my favorite people of all time to do this with. I have been lucky, or made enough of my own luck, to find other people to continue to do this with.
In doing the Stirner project, I was able to read a book I’d been wanting/meaning to read for years, read it closely, and do so with a partner and with 6 other friends. I’m old enough to realize this isn’t an easy thing to find. I’m young enough to keep making mistakes, to poke the bear, to get too excited, to still maintain naivety, to still insanely do some of the same things while expecting different results. But, I still will try to grow and learn and change despite this. I am glad I have friends I can do projects like this with. I am glad I have people who will listen and engage(sometimes) with my metaphysical meanderings and play back with me. This project is the play of friends who gathered together to challenge ourselves and each other and have as much fucking fun as we can. And, we are just sick enough that our idea of fun is reading 200 year old philosophical texts and fighting about them! This project is for me, for us, and for anyone that ever felt alone in life and/or reading and wanted to connect with someone about the things they care and think about most, and the books they read that they fall in love with and want to share. It is my naive hope that someone will listen to us and feel some connection, the way I feel when I read books I love, and when I discuss with with people who like to challenge and be challenged.